Rich Chinese Delegates Show Off Their Net Worth at People’s Congress

March 15, 2012 Updated: March 18, 2012

China’s two meetings—the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference—have become a stage for China’s super rich delegates to show off their haute-couture and luxury-brand accessories under the media’s spot light.

According to a March 6 China Economic Weekly report, 156 delegates at the two meetings own A-Shares companies with a total market value of approximately US$950 billion. This amounts to 22.6 percent of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange and Shanghai Stock Exchange combined.

The research was jointly compiled by China Economy Research Institute, a think-tank of China Economic Weekly, and Wind Information Co. Ltd.

Bloomberg, in a Feb. 26 article titled “China’s Billionaire People’s Congress Makes Capitol Hill Look Like Paupers,” said the 70 richest delegates of the NPC own more wealth than the 535 U.S. Senators and House Representatives, the President and Cabinet Ministers, and nine Supreme Court Justices combined.

This session of the NPC includes China’s richest delegates. In Beijing, where the delegates are staying, police were stationed every five yards, guarding the road. Two bus routes next to Tiananmen Square had been closed.

Ms. Dai Qing, a Chinese political and social observer, told VOA that China’s political system is a marriage of power and capital, and is about enabling the rich and powerful to make more profits.

Luxury

During the few days of the meetings, many delegates showed up with luxury brand fashion accessories all over them, such as handbags by Dior, Celine, and Marc Jacobs, Dior eyewear, Chanel series clothing, Hermes belts and Hermes platinum handbags. This has become another kind of attraction at the two meetings.

Xu Jiayin, chairman of Evergrande Real Estate Group, became a celebrity on Chinese microblogs when he arrived late at the meetings, wearing a stylish suit and Hermes belt, and showed himself off to the media. His picture circulated on the Internet, and he was nicknamed “the Hermes Bloke.”

Song Zuying, an Army singer with close ties to Jiang Zemin, attended the meetings in military uniform. While she was interviewed by the media, she showed off her Piaget Limelight Magic Hours watch, estimated to be worth over US$40,000.

According to a March 5 Qianjiang Evening News report, 30 female delegates from Zhejiang Province were going to make a group appearance in the expensive traditional “Qipao” (Cheongsam) dress. Every piece of Qipao is made by Wu Haiyan, a famous Chinese designer. In addition, well-known make-up artist Mao Geping was hired to do the make-up for these delegates.

Not everyone was dazzled or impressed. Wang Xuming the Director of the Language and Culture Press commented on microblogs: “The two-meetings are not the Oscars, Golden Rooster, Golden Chrysanthemum or Golden Eagle Awards. What they do and what they wear, plus all of this praise, is not news but just a scandal.

Summer Cool, a netizen from Liaoning Province, said on his microblog: “This kind of two-meetings is not needed. It’s all for the rich and not for the poor.”

Read the original Chinese article.